From Associated Press
WASHINGTON — Businesses slashed inventories in November by the largest amount in seven years as they scrambled to cope with a record plunge in sales.
The Commerce Department says that inventories were reduced by 0.7 percent in November, even worse than the 0.5 percent drop analysts expected. It marked the third straight month that businesses have cut their stockpiles, the longest stretch since four straight months of reductions that ended in August 2003.
The big drop in inventories in November reflected a record 5.1 percent drop in total business sales that followed a 3.9 percent decline in October.